CCIS NEWS - November Slovenia Business Link Newsletter

November 2019

CCIS NEWS

Slovenian Business Summit: Measures in the field of innovations, human resources’ management and reputation paving the way to Slovenia 5.0, the society of sustainable development

The introduction of research vouchers and supporting the employment of young researchers in enterprises, the development of the Career platform for long-term planning of competencies of the future, the adoption of the goals and strategy for the augmentation of the Made in Slovenia trade mark and the systematic debureaucratization of the state are key measures aimed at the future development of Slovenia, stated more than 450 leading representatives of the economy, politics and other industries at the 14th Slovenian Business Summit. The representatives of business, government and science also signed a special statement for Slovenia 5.0.

International meeting of the Slovenian paper industry

In today’s day and age, the traditional paper industry is undergoing a transformation into a modern industry of the future that functions in accordance with the principle of circular economy, is based on bio materials and utilizes the digital transformation to boost its development and maximize efficiency. The paper industry is well aware of the limited supply of natural raw materials and the issue of fossil fuels. For this reason, it uses natural and renewable raw materials, it is closing material and energy loops, and is becoming increasingly efficient from the energy and material consumption aspects. There is no shortage of challenges and a search is under way to achieve the goal that is merely an interim stop on the long-term developmental journey of enterprises, products and industries. The main challenges of the industry are innovations, investment and especially human resources. These were the issues discussed by attendees on 20 and 21 October at the 23rd Day of the Slovenian Paper Industry and the 46th International Annual Symposium of the DITP (Pulp and Paper Engineers and Technicians Association).

Artificial intelligence as the engine of competitiveness growth

The application of artificial intelligence today is essential to the optimisation of processes, break-through services and digital business models. By 2030, artificial intelligence is expected to become the main factor of growth of the global GDP. Slovenian ICT companies in this field may well be among the leaders and as such significantly contribute to the rise of value added, was a consenting opinion of the attendees of tje GoDigital conference that was organized for the second time on 19 November by the Association of Informatics and Telecommunications of the CCIS.

Together for a modern wage model

On 13 November, the CCIS organized, for the fifth year in a row, a panel discussion entitled Employers’ Day, with the discussion dedicated to current topics in the field of employment and social law. This is already the second discussion in the scope of the bipartite project Strengthening of Social Partners’ competencies in the Collective Agreements 2017-2021. This years’ theme was entitled “Together for a modern wage model”. Introductory remarks of the CCIS General Manager Sonja Šmuc were followed by introductory speeches by the representatives of employers and employees: Mitja Gorenšček, Executive Director of the CCIS, and Jakob Krištof Počivavšek, Chair of the KSS PERGAM (Confederation of Trade Unions of Slovenia PERGAM). Ms. Šmuc emphasized the fact that the CCIS is a responsible employers’ organization that pursuits long-term objectives between employees and employers, also as regards such material topics as a new wage model. Both representatives agreed that the Amendment of the Minimum Wage Act, by way of a new definition of a salary, presented us with a subtextual task calling for a consideration of a different, modern wage model.

Food of the future and/or the future of food?

Food that is tasty, healthy and accepted by buyers can only be ensured by connecting the industry, knowledge institutions and politics as well as by upgrading traditions with innovative technologies, was the opinion of the attendees of the Future Food conference in mid November. An exhibition under the same name was also opened; it will continue in the Dom gospodarstva until 10 January 2020.

30th Real-estate business discussion panel

Almost 400 attendees gathered on 7 and 8 November and discussed the most important and current issues regarding real-estate business. At the plenary part of the discussion, most attention was given to the discussion about the measures for the provision of additional 10,000 rented flats. Quite a lot of attention was also paid to the reading of the draft of the new Housing Act. The participants found the draft to be vastly incomplete, even though it entails some solutions that are, in principle, good.

 

UPCOMING EVENTS

28 November: Enterprises are inviting to view job posts on

On 28 November 2019, starting at 4:30 p.m., the fourth Open Day of the Slovenian economy will take place. The event is intended for attendees to get to know jobs in the working environment where they are actually carried out. This way, participants will be able to directly obtain all necessary information on where to continue their education and seek employment. More than 100 enterprises across Slovenia will open their doors at the same time in the afternoon, thereby also allowing participation of parents and other adults that are at work in the earlier hours of the day, and of the young that are at schools in the morning. The list of participating enterprises is published on www.odkrijsvojtalent.si.

28 November: Round Table of the French - Slovenian Business Club: Strengthening internationalization is a strategic necessity

The French - Slovenian Business Club, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia, the SPIRIT Slovenia Public Agency and the Embassy of France in Slovenia are organizing a round table that will present a “bottom-up” rational view in the present moment when the threat of a new crisis is becoming increasingly real. Which resources, ambitions and perspectives are available? Is the challenge of growing up from a small young lion to a youthful leopard too great?

28 November: Seminar: Mexico – a land of opportunities for Slovenian enterprises

With the aim of presenting certain possibilities for economic trade cooperation and investment as well as experience and potential problems in transactions with Mexico, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia, the Embassy and Consulate of Mexico and the SPIRIT Slovenia Public Agency are inviting representatives of Slovenian enterprises to meet Her Excellency Mrs. Alicia Buenrostro Massieu, the Ambassador of the United Mexican States. In her introductory address, Mrs. Buenrostro will present the general and economic situation in Mexico, business opportunities and possibilities for foreign investments and establishment of companies in Mexico.At the following stage of the event, the participants will have the opportunity to present their experience and plans in relation to operations on the 122-million Mexican market.

3 December: Business delegation visits Hungary

The Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia, in cooperation with the SPIRIT Slovenia Public Agency and the Hungarian Chamber of Commerce, is organizing a business forum and individual meetings between Slovenian and Hungarian enterprises. The event, taking place in Budapest, is the result of the endeavours to deepen business relations with Slovenia’s sixth most important trade partner. The purpose of the meetings is to establish new contacts and strengthen the existing ones, establish export/import transactions, seek new business opportunities and obtain information about the Hungarian business environment.

11 December: Slovenian - Luxembourg Business Forum and B2B

At the occasion of the visit of Luxembourg enterprises to Slovenia under the auspices of their chamber of commerce, organizers kindly invite representatives of enterprises to a bilateral business event and individual meetings at the CCIS.

17 and 18 December: Export business delegation at a joint meeting of the governments of Serbia and Slovenia in Belgrade

At the occasion of the joint meeting of the governments of the Republic of Slovenia and Republic of Serbia in Belgrade, in cooperation with the Slovenian Ministry of Economic Development and Technology, the SPIRIT Slovenia Public Agency, the Slovenian Ministry of Foreign Affairs , the Chamber of Commerce of Serbia and the CCIS, we are organizing a visit of the Slovenian business delegation to Belgrade. We wish to acquaint Serbian business partners and institutions with new business and developmental proposals, exchange information about business opportunities and reaffirm the existing cooperation in the fields of digitalization with respect to agriculture, e-administration and digital innovations, joint operations on third markets – Africa etc.

 

DATA SECTION

September wage growth higher again, as expected

As expected, the year-on-year gross wage growth accelerated in September to 4.9% (+4.3% in the first nine months of 2019), while the net wage growth amounted to 4.1% (+4.5% in the first nine months of 2019). In the state sector (which is a part of the wider public sector that also includes state-owned companies), the September wage growth amounted to 5.3%, and to 3.7% in the private sector. The September wages saw the greatest increase in the public administration sector (+EUR 163), followed by finances (+ EUR 155), ICT activities (+ EUR 141) and electricity, gas and steam supply (+EUR 116). Both wages determined by the state as well as wages in companies that are vastly indirectly or directly owned by the state (energetics) increased. On the other side, the wages in finances and ICT activities reflected a growth in the employment of experts that are usually not subject to international competition. In the processing activities, gross wage increased by EUR 71 (+4.5%), which was somewhat below the state average.

European Commission further lowered the forecast for Slovenia for 2019

According to the autumn forecast by the European Commission, Slovenian GDP is to rise by 2.6% in 2019, and by 2.7% in 2020. Thus, the Commission further lowered the 2019 forecast, whereas the forecast for 2020 saw a more slight downturn. Year-on-year (considering the same period last year), the growth of the Slovenian GDP in the first six months of 2019 amounted to 2.9%. In the first six months of 2019, the growth was propelled by domestic demand, although at a somewhat weaker growth of private consumption, and the growth of gross investments, mainly in residential construction (13.8% growth), and somewhat lower investments by companies in equipment and machines (3.6% growth). Investment growth is expected to realistically amount to 6% in the next two years, while the growth of investments in machines and equipment is expected to be quite lower (2.1% annually). The weakened foreign demand is the most important reason for the lowered forecast. Slovenian export of goods and services in 2019 is expected to strengthen by 7.9%, and only by additional 4.9% in 2020, while the import of goods and services is also expected to increase - by 9.2% in 2019 and by 5.8% in 2020.

Industry facing a lower production growth in 2019 compared to previous year

Short-term indicators for Slovenia, especially those that are related to industry and international environment, already show less favourable results for this year compared to the previous year. In the first nine months, the growth of goods’ export was higher by 9.6%, and import grew by 11.8%, due to intense trade and distribution activity in medical and pharmaceutical products, and partly also regarding petroleum and its derivatives. The calming down of the foreign demand is reflected on the Slovenian industrial production that saw only a 3.2% growth in the first nine months. An increase is seen especially in the production of the highly technological, complex industries, while the biggest drop can be seen in low-tech industries. This year, solid growth persists in service activities (6.4% growth), where high growth remained in office and information activities and entrepreneurial counselling (growth above 12%). Retail sales (including motor fuels) was also higher in the first nine months this year, i.e. by 6.6%, while the growth in motor vehicle trade amounted to only 3.8%. Since the summer months, the value of construction works performed has become increasingly steady. Thus, 6.2% more construction works were performed in the first nine months of 2019, while, on a year-on-year basis, records have shown less construction works were performed in September compared to the same period in the previous year.


Below you will find some statistical data for Slovenia:



Growth rates in % - in comparison to the same period of previous year


Latest data


GDP – real growth


2.5


2.q 2019, S.A.*


GDP – forecast for 2019**


2.9


Apr. 2019


Consumer prices (HICP)


1.4


Oct. 2019


Export of goods


15.2


Sep. 2019


Import of goods


13.6


Sep. 2019


Industrial production (manufacturing)


1.9


Sep. 2019


Retail sales w/o motor fuels (real)


1.3


Sep. 2019


Construction (real)


-8.1


Sep. 2019


Exchange rate EURO/USD


1.1053


Oct. 2019


Diesel (EUR/liter), VAT incl.


1.258


Valid from Nov 19th, 2019

*seasonally and calendar adjusted
**Eastern European Consensus

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